SYDNEY Swans coach John Longmire has passionately defended veteran star Adam Goodes after the dual Brownlow medallist was accused of 'squirrel gripping’ Richmond’s Taylor Hunt on Friday night.
A still image showing Goodes tangled up with Tiger Taylor Hunt was circulated across various social media platforms after the Swans’ clash with the Tigers, with some journalists and footy followers accusing the Swan of foul play.
Longmire reacted strongly when asked about the incident on Monday.
"We think, as a club, that the way that was highlighted was disgraceful," Longmire said.
"If you still a lot of pieces of play during an AFL game of football I'm sure you could make an issue of a number of different things
"To have that one highlighted in particular, I think is very poor.
"You guys make your own decisions but make them on an informed basis. When you look at the whole piece of play in its entirety whilst the game is unfolding, rather than a particular still (shot) in a moment in time; I think you have a more balanced view of it.
"I just encourage people to do that."
Longmire's mood was further soured by the suspensions to star forwards Lance Franklin and Kurt Tippett. The pair accepted one-match bans for separate incidents during the Swans' disappointing loss to the Tigers.
Longmire said Franklin was well aware of the risks of bumping over tackling.
"If you bump you do it at your peril," Longmire said.
"I'm on the record as saying that you put yourself at risk if you decide to bump, and you need to make sure you take that out if it.
"They're human, they get it wrong sometimes, and that’s what happened in this case."
It leaves the 2012 premiership coach with two large selection headaches before Thursday night's clash with Port Adelaide at the SCG.
Forward-turned-defender Sam Reid is almost certain to be sent inside 50 to try and cover the loss of Franklin.
"Sam's obviously played centre half-forward for us for a fair bit of time since he's been at the Swans," Longmire said.
"We know he's capable of being in our front half, he's done it before, and I'm sure if he needed too, and we went that way, he could go forward again," Longmire said.
Utility Dean Towers is another candidate to come into the side.
Longmire is hopeful that ruckman Mike Pyke will be fit to play the Power after missing the Richmond loss with a knee injury, while speedster Ben McGlynn could also return from a hamstring strain.
In more positive news for the Swans, rising star Isaac Heeney is almost certain to return through the NEAFL after missing the past six games with a knee problem, while 2012 premiership player Craig Bird (shoulder) and Dan Robinson (ankle) have been cleared of serious damage, after going down in the reserves last week.
Below: The picture that was circulated on social media